Island Food – Manjuyod Sandbar

Did I mentioned we really had a good time (and a full tummy) in Manjuyod? 

We bought food for grilling but there are also fishermen selling oysters and other seafoods in the area. 

The oysters are really fresh. Just add vinegar and tadah – oyster sashimi. Better with ice cold beer. Hehe

We ended up eating all of these:

 Burp 🙂 

Manjuyod Sandbar – Maldives of the Philippines 

I love sandbars. The first one I’ve been to was in Camiguin and I’ve love sandbars from thereon. 
I have never heard of Manjuyod. My friend just insisted us to visit this place during our Dumaguete trip. Good thing we listened to her,  Manjuyod is like a sandbar on steroids – it’s beautiful!

I got really tan after this trip. Blaming it on the clear water of this place! Can’t help myself not to swim. 

Let’s just say we really had fun.

We are here the whole day so we got to experience Manjuyod at both high and low tide. 

Low tide:

This place has a lot of potential. It’s not that well-developed yet but it’s certainly very promising. 

Love Turtles? Go to Apo Island. 

When you’re in Dumaguete and swimming with turtles is in your bucketlist, take time to visit Apo Island. We went to this place straight from the airport. We just left some things in the van, rode the boat and bam! – Hello Apo Island. Travel time from the port to the island is just about an hour at most. I never expected it to be that near.

(Note that Apo Island and Apo Reef are two different places. Apo Reef is somewhere in Mindoro.) 

You can rent snorkling gears there. I think there are also diving spots in the island since we saw a number of people in their diving suits. 

Here is the swiming with the turtles part. Sorry for the pics. We don’t have a decent underwater camera plus I don’t know how to swim  nor how to dive. 

A turtle! It’s my first time to see one up close. Definitely one for the books. 🙂

Mt. Mayon, The Beautiful One

Step aside Mt. Fuji, because you are not the only mountain with a perfect cone.

Guys, meet Mt. Mayon. 🙂

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Immediately after boarding-off the plane to Albay you will see this wonder. When you have the chance of taking a picture of it “cloud-less”, grab it. The locals say that the mountain is sometimes “moody” and does not show itself to people. Plus the weather in Bicol is somewhat unpredictable. It’s sunny on our first day there and then it suddenly got rainy on the next days to the point of our return flight to Manila being cancelled. Yup. This happened.

Luckily, we were able to take a picture of it after our plane lands. (Sometimes, it really pays to be a cam whore. Haha✌)

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The word “Mayon” is actually a contraction of the Bicolano word “Magayon” which means beautiful. So Mt. Mayon literally means Mt. Beautiful. Very fitting right? It looks so pretty. I found myself literally staring at it.

One of our agenda when we went to Bicol was to see Mt. Mayon up-close. You can do this by riding an ATV to the foot of Mt. Mayon. Zac Efron did this activity during his visit in the Philippines.

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We chose the black lava trail.

And then the fun began. 🙂

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It’s really fun! I’m not the adventurous type of person but I enjoyed the trail so much.

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Look at this face. Lol

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After like two hours, you’ll reach a rest station where you can buy refreshments and do toilet breaks.

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After that, there is short hike going to the foot of Mt. Mayon. Don’t worry. The hike is really short and (more importantly) tolerable. Trust me. Hehe 🙂

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Without realizing it, we are the foot already. I was saying “wow” a lot of times when we got there. Haha

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It’s raining during this part of our trip so we were not able to see Mayon. But the view is still awesome.

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You have the option of going back to the rest station via zipline just like what my friend did. Of course, there is an additional fee for this.

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But you can just also hike back.

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I really want to go back and do the green trail next time. I really enjoyed this part of our trip. As per our guide, there is even an option of going to the crater or even do camping. Of course, this is only feasible on good weather conditions.
 
From someone like me who grew up in the Philippines, I used to just see Mayon in our elementary textbooks. So seeing Mayon in person is like seeing a celebrity. A really beautiful celebrity. It’s a must try. 🙂

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Subic Beach – Matnog, Sorsogon

Note that this is not to be confused with the Subic of Olongapo City. This is the one in Sorsogon. It’s the most well-known beach in Sorsogon and it has been called Subic since way back as per our boat guide.

There is no direct flight from Manila to Sorsogon, so you must fly to Albay and then ride a bus going to Sorsogon proper and then a jeep going to Matnog. It’s about a three and half hour land ride all in all.  I must say, the roads in Bicol are of one of the most well-maintained that I saw in the country.

Once you reached Matnog, you’ll see this:

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How cool is that! Haha.

Sorsogon is at the southern-most tip of Luzon island (same island where Manila is). It’s quite far that I usually mistaken it to be part of the Visayas region already.

From here, you still have to take a boat ride going to Subic beach (about a thirty minutes ride).

And then, congratulations! You have already reached Subic beach. 🌊

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Us, doing what we do best – beach bumming. 🙂

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Barcelona Church – Sorsogon

During our Bicol trip, we went to Barcelona, Sorsogon just so we can have a picture of below. Haha

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My friend saw this on Instagram and she urged us to go here. But it’s raining that day so we weren’t able to really take good pics of this standee. Plus the flowers were no longer there. Haha.

Anyway, in front of this is the Barcelona Church.

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In the Philippines, churches are like public work of arts. We have a lot of old churches spanning as early as the 1600s so it’s really a good idea to go inside and take a peek and of course make a short prayer.

Beautiful stained-glass entrance.

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Here is the interior:

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More stained-glass.

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I love old churches. They are like silent witnesses of history. 

Nagsasa Cove, Zambales 🌴🐚

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There are actually three islands you can go to when you are in Zambales – Capones, Anawangin and Nagsasa. (Too bad, we weren’t able to go to Anawangin though.)

We stayed overnight in Nagsasa. I like the place since it has amenities like huts, toilets, a supply of fresh water and a sari-sari store (convenience store). Plus, you can hire someone to cook for you like what we did. Definitely hassle-free. Mind you, they cook really well. 🐷

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For some reason, pine trees are growing in this island instead of the usual coconuts. I’m not complaining. It suits the place really well.

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You can bring tents like what we did. Or if you don’t have one you can just sleep in the huts. Or on the beach. Whatever floats your boat. 🙂

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After resting, we went around the island.

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I love how the place like flaunt out the mountains. Reminds me of Batanes. At least from what I see in pictures of Batanes (I haven’t been there. Yet. #Bucketlist:)). 🗻

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As expected, we took pictures. A lot of pictures. Haha

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After going around and having our pictorial, we decided to take a dip. The water is cool. Perfect for relaxing. It’s low tide at that time so it’s pretty fun to “swim”. Especially for someone like me who only knows hot to float on water. Haha.

We just swam and talked about random things and then we witnessed this:

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I love sunsets! It feels great talking to friends while looking at this. Good times. The only thing missing are ice-cold beers! Haha.

The place is also good for star-gazing. Below was taken by my friend. Too bad I was not able to take a picture of the stars since I’m already asleep by that time. (Blame the alcohol. Haha.)

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You can also have a bonfire by the beach. We planned to have one but we had a drinking session and just ended up talking and goofing around. Bottomline, we forgot to set-up the bonfire. Haha.

Sunrise.

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We strolled around.  And heard the waves. 🌊

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After having breakfast, we had a mini hike on one of the peaks.

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Me with my friend / photography sensei. Haha.

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Nice view of the island from the top.

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We took a rest after the climb and then went to Capones Island (see previous post).

I really enjoyed this trip. The place is perfect if you want to disconnect from city life for a while. :)👍